Plastics

Riding the wave of waste M&As

Now a multi-billion-pound industry, UK waste and recycling is attracting attention from both local and international investors. However, having had a quiet start to the year compared with 2014, will merger and acquisition activity pick up? Matt Clay investigates


Plastics problem rises to the surface

Marine litter is currently one of the sexier environmental topics, with the focus on bottles and bags in particular. But behind those headline-grabbers lurks a material that has slipped under the radar and out into the sea. David Burrows reports on what the UN, the plastics industry and others are doing about it


What did the waste sector achieve in 2014?

This year ended much like the last: in disappointment. But despite the lack of interest shown in waste policy across Whitehall and, perhaps even Europe, the sector has carried on regardless. Freelance writer, David Burrows looks at the highs and lows of the UK waste management industry over the last 12 months.


Waste collection in the Gulf of Cádiz

Waste collection specialist in Mediterranean countries, Tim Byrne examines the waste management system of the Spanish coastal resorts of Lepe, Islantilla and La Antilla on the Gulf of Cádiz and looks at how the municipalities deal with the pressures of high numbers of visitors at the height of the tourist season.


Complete Wasters: For when the party is over

Have you ever wondered what happens to the rubbish festival-goers leave behind after a music festival? Three people in the know are the team from Complete Wasters, a workers’ co-operative based in Sileby, Leicester. Marie-Claire Kidd reports.


Driving the UK market for recycled plastics

In August, the British Plastic Federation Recycling Group launched a manifesto setting out proposals to reform the PRN/PERN system for plastics, increase the use of recycled plastics in UK manufacturing and encourage investment in recycling infrastructure. Three industry experts share their views on the manifesto.



Sustainable packaging: Is it truly achievable?

While consumers are keen for brands and supermarkets to use environmentally-friendly packaging, it begs the question: What exactly is sustainable packaging? Should the term refer to a material that can be recycled or does it go deeper than that? Freelance writer David Burrows investigates.


Recycling plastics: Is the UK behind Europe?

The recovery of plastics in Europe has improved over the last five years, however as demand for plastics increases, the amount of post-consumer plastics waste has been increasing. With the disposal rate at 38.1%, action needs to be taken to reach the zero plastics to landfill target in Europe by 2020, urges Andy Watkins, commercial director, Wrights Plastics.


Is a nation's waste an industry's resource?

Ahead of the 2015 general election, our industry needs to be thinking about what it should expecting from those politicians who hold the levers of power. We need simple but effective changes that make good sense, not just for us as a sector, but for meeting our recycling targets as well, says Jonathan Short, founder and deputy chairman of ECO Plastics.


Optimising production and increasing profits

With the recycling sector estimated to be worth around nine billion pounds, high quality recyclable materials are now commodities with baling technologies sitting at the heart of this growing industry. Claire Col reports.


How will TEEP impact local authorities' operations?

Waste management consultants, Steve Rymill and Dr Adam Read of Ricardo-AEA consider the implications of TEEP (technically, environmentally and economically practicable) for local authorities and how they should work their way through all the new guidance that is now available.


Driving change beyond 2015: The way forward for waste

Waste and resource management beyond 2015 and the importance of reuse and quality recycling were some of the issues tackled at the CIWM and ESA conference last week with speakers calling for integrated policies, a clear roadmap and a reframing of the waste and resource debate. Geraldine Faulkner reports.



Illegal packaging and its impact on the UK

Europe’s packaging firms are calling for more testing of overseas products following a flood of cheap imports from the Far East that don’t comply with regulations and threaten to contaminate recycling streams. David Burrows, freelance writer, investigates.


What impact will the new MRF Regulations have?

What will the new materials recovery facilities (MRF) Regulations mean for the waste sector, in particular for local authorities and their services? Victoria Hutchin and Dr Adam Read report.


Moving waste in a safe and responsible manner

The Health & Safety Executive ranks waste and recycling as a high risk industry. Although the sector employs only about 0.6% of the employees in the UK, it accounts for over 4% of all workplace fatalities. Freelance writer, Joe Morris looks at how the materials handling sector is working to keep its employees safe.


Clever Danes inject new life into waste management

Imagine UK householders no longer having to separate their waste at source and the biodegradable materials in black bag rubbish being turned into a high quality bioliquid that is suitable for biogas production. Fiction? Not according to Danish technology that has just been launched. Geraldine Faulkner reports.


Forschung durch technik: Stay fire free

Fire protection should, first and foremost, prevent fires and fight them. Detecting fire hazards early enough to avoid a fire breaking out is even better. The more so if it can quickly be extinguished before all is lost. Dr Jörg Lantzsch looks at how infrared technology helped a producer of refuse derived fuel.



Setting 2017 plastics packaging targets

The ambitious targets for recycling of plastic packaging set by the government are still the hottest topic in town. Philip Law, public and industrial affairs director at the British Plastics Federation, reports on that and other issues of concern to the British Plastics Federation.